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Economy in Brief

U.S. Current Account Deficit Another Record
by Tom Moeller September 14, 2004

The US current account deficit deepened sharply to$166.2B in 2Q04, a new record. Consensus expectations had been for a 2Q deficit of $159.0B.

The deficit in goods trade deteriorated to $163.6B from $135.5B a year ago, driven by the huge rise in the June merchandise trade deficit reported last month.

Exports of goods, services & income in 2Q rose 3.2% (17.0% y/y) led by a 2.8% (14.2% y/y) rise in merchandise exports. Imports rose 6.7% (19.3% y/y) with merchandise imports up 5.3% (17.0% y/y).

The surplus on services rose slightly to $13.3B but so far this year is off the pace which in 2003 generated a surplus of $51.0B and $89.9B in 1997.

US Int'l Balance of Payments 2Q '04 1Q '04 Y/Y 2003 2002 2001
Current Account Deficit $166.2B $147.2B $133.9B $530.7B $473.9B $385.7B
  Goods/Services/Income Deficit $147.6B $126.4B $117.5B $463.2B $414.6B $339.1B
    Exports 3.2% 2.1% 17.0% 5.8% -3.9% -9.0%
    Imports 6.7% 5.3% 19.3% 7.3% 1.5% -8.2%
  Unilateral Transfers Deficit $18.5B $20.7B $16.4B $67.4 $59.4B $46.6B
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